OSP CALL-IN OF KEY OFFICER DECISION – CLOSURE OF RAMSGATE DISTRICT OFFICE

 

Extraordinary

Overview & Scrutiny Panel    26 July 2017

 

Report Author                         Senior Democratic Services Officer

 

Portfolio Holder                      Councillor Townend, Cabinet Member for Financial Services & Estates

 

Status                                      For Recommendation

 

Classification:                          Unrestricted

 

Key Decision                           Yes

 

Reasons for Key                     Significant effect on communities

 

Ward:                                      All of Ramsgate Wards

 

Executive Summary:

 

The purpose of this covering report is to introduce a call-in regarding the key officer decision made relating to the ‘Closure of Ramsgate District Office. This decision, which is attached as Annex 1 to the report, falls within the delegated authority of the Director of East Kent Services (Shared Services) and because it is a key decision, the Overview & Scrutiny Panel members can call it in.

 

 

Recommendation(s):

 

Members guidance is sought on following:

 

1.   Whether the Panel wishes to forward some recommendations to the appropriate officer (Director of East Kent Services) or;

 

2.   The Panel wishes to take no further action.

 

 

 

 

CORPORATE IMPLICATIONS

Financial and Value for Money

There are no implications arising directly from this report. However there are financial implications as a result of the officer decision referred to in this report. There will be budget savings as a result of the closure which form part of a challenging savings target for EKS. Additionally, there has been investment in digital services that enable the reduction in face-to-face contact, helping to mitigate the impact on customers.

Legal

In exercising the right to call-in an executive decision the Panel ought to satisfy itself that some or all of the principles of decision making at reflected in Article 13 of the Council Constitution have not been adhered to. These include the following:

 

(a) the presumption in favour of openness and transparency;

(b) the need for due consultation;

(c) the need to take account of relevant professional advice from appropriate staff;

(d) the need for clarity of aims and desired outcomes;

(e) the need to identify the range of options considered;

(f) the need to give reasons and explanation for a decision;

(g) the need to ensure that all necessary requirements of legality and confidence are observed.

Corporate

There are no direct corporate risks associated with this report.

Equality Act 2010 & Public Sector Equality Duty

Members are reminded of the requirement, under the Public Sector Equality Duty (section 149 of the Equality Act 2010) to have due regard to the aims of the Duty at the time the decision is taken. The aims of the Duty are: (i) eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Act, (ii) advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it, and (iii) foster good relations  between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.

 

Protected characteristics: age, gender, disability, race, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, religion or belief and pregnancy & maternity. Only aim (i) of the Duty applies to Marriage & civil partnership.

 

Please indicate which aim is relevant to the report.

Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Act,

 

Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it

 

Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.

 

There no equity and equalities issues arising directly from this report. However there may be equity and equalities implications arising directly from the decision attached as Annex 1 to the report.

 

The Council needs to retain a strong focus and understanding on issues of diversity amongst the local community and ensure service delivery matches these.

 

 

CORPORATE PRIORITIES (tick those relevant)ü

 

 

CORPORATE VALUES (tick those relevant)ü

 

A clean and welcoming Environment 

 

 

Delivering value for money

 

Promoting inward investment and job creation

 

 

Supporting the Workforce

 

Supporting neighbourhoods

 

 

Promoting open communications

ü

 

1.0       Introduction and Background

 

1.1       The Director of East Kent Services made a decision on the Closure of Ramsgate District Office and it was published on Friday, 14 July 2017, giving Overview and Scrutiny Panel members five working days to call-in the decision if they deemed it necessary.

 

1.2       On 17 July, The Overview and Scrutiny Chairman requested that the officer decision be called-in and advised Democratic Services that six Panel members from across the political parties had made the request for a call-in.

 

2.0         Reasons for Call-in

 

2.1         The Panel Chairman cited the following reasons for call-in:

 

(a): the presumption in favour of openness and transparency

(b): the need for due consultation

(e): the need to identify the range of options considered

(f): the need to give reasons and explanation for a decision

 

3.0       Options

 

3.1       Members could choose one of the following options either:

1.    Whether the Panel wishes to forward some recommendations to the appropriate officer (Director of East Kent Services) or;

2.     The Panel wishes to take no further action.

 

4.0       Next Steps

 

4.1       If Members agree to take no further action, then the decision becomes implementable from the day of the Panel meeting.

 

4.2       If the Panel refers some recommendations to the Director of East Kent Services for consideration, then such recommendations will have to be taken into account when the officer makes a final decision on the matter.

 

Contact Officer:

Charles Hungwe, Senior Democratic Services Officer, Ext: 57186

Reporting to:

Nick Hughes, Committee Services Manager, Ext: 57208

 

Annex List

 

Annex 1

Closure of Ramsgate District Office Decision Notice

 

Background Papers

 

Title

Details of where to access copy

None

N/A

 

Corporate Consultation

 

Finance

Tim Willis, Director of Corporate Resources

Legal

Tim Howes, Director of Corporate Governance